Lightning Lap 2014: Chevrolet Corvette Stingray

The C7 hands out stability and confidence like Halloween candy.

October 2014

With great steering and handling, the latest Corvette is a highly engaging road car. But aside from a few laps at GMís Milford Road Course and the very short Streets of Willow Springs circuit in California, we hadnít spent much time hustling a C7 around a track. Until this yearís LL Thrash-a-palooza, that is.

Turns out, not much time is needed to turn a lap. At 2:53.8, the basic C7 is a mere 0.3 second off the previous Z06 with the Z07 package (tires, brakes, and chassis upgrades from the ZR1) and just a little more than three seconds slower than the 638-hp 2012 ZR1. A non-Z07 Z06 ran a 2:58.2. Remember, this is a regular C7. The time it posted is usually the realm of cars costing two to three times its $65,665 price.

Stability and confidence? The Corvette hands íem out like Halloween candy. Grip from the Pilot Super Sports had us double-checking to see if they were actually the more track-focused Pilot Sport Cup 2s. In many corners, such as Turn One, the C7 outstuck the ZR1. In the uphill esses, the new Vette beat the ZR1ís average speed. Engineers have seemingly hooked the Corvette into the earth with something other than Newtonian physics. No matter where you are on the track, off-curbing or off-camber, the carís center of gravity feels buried deep in the earthís crust.

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